It was common for parents in Jesus' day to bring their children to teacher and elders to be blessed. But the disciples view this as a distraction. "We are on a mission here. People to see, places to go. Can't be distracted by kids."
Jesus, however, rebukes them. He says these children are models for the citizens of the Kingdom and he welcomes them. Welcoming them is like welcoming Jesus himself (Matthew 18:1-5).
He also gives stern warnings about anyone who causes them to fall into sin (18:16). The abuse, neglect, oppression and exploitation of children can do exactly that: tripping them up and ensaring them in sin, self-destructive behaviour, shame, despair and rage.
It's a rescue mission: go find them, save them from the hands of those who would exploit them, give them what they need to flourish and, most of all, bring them into the presence of Jesus.
Every time you see an adult, try to imagine him or her as a child. Every time you see a child, imagine that child as the vest adult he or she can be.
If you have any questions or simply want to talk... please know I/we are available.~Jeff (The OAM Pastor Guy)